Session Detail

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Tuesday, September 17, 2019  |  8:30 AM - 9:45 AM

Open to All Attendees!

Welcoming Ceremony and Opening Keynote: The Future of Hospital Sound

Yoko Sen
Founder, Sen Sound

How might we transform the culture of healthcare by reimagining the sound environment of hospitals?


Several years ago, a classically trained musician had unexpected health complications and spent many hours in hospitals. Being a musician, sensitive to sound, she was disturbed by the noise around her: people talking and screaming, doors getting slammed, phones and pagers ringing non-stop, overhead speakers announcing emergencies… and the cacophony of alarms beeping in the dissonance of tritones. Since then, she has embarked on a mission to transform the sound environment in hospitals, in collaboration with Johns Hopkins Sibley Memorial Hospital, Stanford Medicine X, TEDMED, and medical device companies.


Join Yoko K. Sen as she takes you on a journey to listen to the world of healthcare like a musician. What do you remember hearing in hospitals? What is the most disturbing sound you remember hearing? What do you wish you could hear – and feel – in hospitals? What is the first sound you remember hearing? What is the last sound you wish to hear at the end of your life? How might we reimagine more human-centered alarms?


When we listen to people talking about sound, their stories are always more than about sound; they seem to reveal what it means to be a human during the most vulnerable times of their lives. In this talk, we will explore noise as a symptom of our culture, how sound reveals the importance of caring for caregivers, future of auditory alarm design, and the aesthetic realm.

SESSION FOCUS AREAS: = Generative Space = NOAH